An LTE iPhone has been on customers’ wish lists for the past year due to the influx of Android devices that have added 4G support. Now, Apple may finally be preparing to release an LTE offering for 2012. DigiTimes reports that as the competition gets more fierce, “Nokia, Apple, RIM and Sony Ericsson are expected to join the LTE club in 2012 as more telecom service providers around the globe are also going to launch LTE services in the coming year, said [their] sources.”
Sprint alone has 15 4G LTE devices slated for release next year. The carrier was one of the first to introduce its 4G network, however it was using standard WiMAX. As the world moves toward LTE, Sprint is hopping on board as well, and now that the iPhone 4S is on Sprint, it gives Apple additional reason to give us all a speed boost. AT&T and Verizon aren’t slouches for rolling out 4G either.
I see two main reasons why Apple has been hesitant to add 4G LTE to the iPhone; the first is because 4G networks eat battery power for breakfast. Battery life has always been a strong suit of the iPhone, especially now while competitors are still struggling to match it. Sacrificing this crucial advantage of the iPhone for 4G speeds still is not something Apple is willing to do. The second reason is because 4G has yet to be widely adopted. If you live outside of a metropolitan area, the chances are high that you do not have access to 4G speeds.
With the shift toward LTE rapidly growing, it looks like 2012 will mark Apple’s turn to catch up.